Is Hydrogen the Future Fuel of F1?

Autosport takes a look at Alpine’s view on hydrogen in Formula One and there are an increasing number of people thinking about hydrogen for emission free internal combustion engines from VIRITECH and Red Bull Racing & Red Bull Technology and Porsche AG in motorsport to JCB and Cummins Inc. for heavy machinery.

It is a simple idea, and one that was perhaps overlooked in the dash to electrify everything. An internal combustion engine just requires something that can be ignited to provide sufficient force to move a piston in a cylinder, and that something could be petrol vapour, natural gas or hydrogen. However in the case of hydrogen the lack of any hydrocarbon molecules being combusted results in carbon free emissions, water in fact, giving the prospect of all the noise and thrill of a mechanical engine with none of the emissions.

From an automotive industry perspective it allows the use of over a hundred years of R&D into internal combustion engines to be repurposed – using hydrogen does require some changes to be made to the engine materials and engine control unit – rather than being thrown away in favour of all electric powertrains. From a consumer perspective, internal combustion engines are much cheaper to manufacture than the alternatives.

In the future we will see a mixture of zero emission powertrain options including battery electric, fuel cell electric and hydrogen combustion engines depending on whether the vehicle is used for an urban commute or a track day. #automotiveindustry #hydrogen #mechanical #formula1 #wec#lemans

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